'Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change' brings together more than 300 objects created between 1857 and 1893. Organized in conjunction with this show 'Picturing Modernity' examines the American West through the lens of 19th-century photography. Anna Parkina's project for SFMOMA, entitled 'Fallow Land' showcases the range of her practice with a large suite of new works on paper. 'Selected Histories. 20th-Century Art from the SFMOMA Collection' is conceived as a series of chapters that illuminate key moments and themes in the art of the 20th century. 'ParaDesign' gathers objects from SFMOMA's architecture and design collection that question the norms, habits, and conventions of design. Contained within ParaDesign is a miniexhibition: the first retrospective of Tobias Wong (1974-2010). The Paul Klee's exhibition presents a diverse array of works made between the two World Wars.
HELIOS: EADWEARD MUYBRIDGE IN A TIME OF CHANGE
From February 26 through June 7, 2011, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will showcase the first-ever retrospective examining all aspects of artist Eadweard Muybridge's pioneering photography. Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change brings together more than 300 objects created between 1857 and 1893, including Muybridge's only surviving zoopraxiscope—an apparatus he designed in 1879 to project motion pictures. Originally organized by Philip Brookman, Corcoran Gallery of Art chief curator and head of research, the San Francisco presentation is organized by SFMOMA Associate Curator of Photography Corey Keller.
Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change includes numerous vintage photographs, albums, stereographs, lantern slides, glass negatives and positives, patent models, zoopraxiscope discs, proof prints, notes, books, and other ephemera. The works have been brought together from 38 different collections and include a number of Muybridge's photographs of Yosemite Valley, including dramatic waterfalls and mountain views from 1867 and 1872; images of Alaska and the Pacific coast; an 1869 survey of the Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroads in California, Nevada, and Utah; pictures from the Modoc War, pictures from Panama and Guatemala; and urban panoramas of San Francisco. The exhibition also includes examples from Muybridge's experimental series of sequential stop-motion photographs such as Attitudes of Animals in Motion (1881) and his later masterpiece Animal Locomotion (1887).
The exhibition is organized in a series of thematic sections that present the chronology of Muybridge's career, the evolution of his unique sensibility, the foundations of his experimental approach to photography, and his connections to other people and events that helped guide his work. The sections include: Introduction: The Art of Eadweard Muybridge (1857–1887); The Infinite Landscape: Yosemite Valley and the Western Frontier (1867–1869); From California to the End of the Earth: San Francisco, Alaska, the Railroads, and the Pacific Coast (1868–1872); The Geology of Time: Yosemite and the High Sierra (1872); Stopping Time: California at the Crossroads of Perception (1872–1878); War, Murder, and the Production of Coffee: the Modoc War and the Development of Central America (1873–1875); Urban Panorama (1877–1880); The Horse in Motion (1877–1881); Motion Pictures: the Zoopraxiscope (1879–1893); and Animal Locomotion (1883–1893).
MUYBRIDGE AND SAN FRANCISCO
Best known for his groundbreaking studies of animals and humans in motion, Muybridge (1830–1904) was also an innovative and successful landscape and survey photographer, documentary artist, inventor, and war correspondent. Born in Kingston upon Thames, England, in 1830, Muybridge immigrated to the United States around 1851. He worked as a bookseller in New York and San Francisco and returned to London in 1860 following a serious injury. Muybridge learned photography in Britain and by 1867 returned to the United States, where began his career as a photographer in San Francisco. He gained recognition through innovative landscape photographs, which showed the grandeur and expansiveness of the American West. Between 1867 and 1871, these were published under the pseudonym "Helios."
Muybridge spent most of his career in San Francisco and Philadelphia during a time of rapid industrial and technological growth. In the 1870s he developed new ways to stop motion with his camera. Muybridge's legendary sequential photographs of running horses helped change how people saw the world. His projected animations inspired the early development of cinema, and his revolutionary techniques produced timeless images that have profoundly influenced generations of photographers, filmmakers, and visual artists.
Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change is organized by the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. and made possible through the generous support of the Trellis Fund. Additional support is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts. The San Francisco presentation is made possible by generous support from Martha and Bruce Atwater and Nion T. McEvoy. Additional support provided by the George Frederick Jewett Foundation.
ABOUT THE CATALOGUE
The catalogue, Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change, includes essays by Marta Braun, Phillip Brookman, Corey Keller, Rebecca Solnit, and an introduction by Andy Grundberg. Published by Steidl, the book is available for purchase at the SFMOMA MuseumStore, or at sfmoma.org/museumstore, for $80.
SFMOMA welcomes more than 650,000 visitors annually and more than 46,000 students visit each year. Since opening its South of Market building in 1995, SFMOMA has added more than 13,000 works to its collections, 95 percent of which were donated, doubling its holdings to 26,000 works. At the same time, SFMOMA's family programs have increased five-fold, teacher-training programs have increased six-fold, and gallery tours have expanded to 1,800. SFMOMA has mounted a series of exhibitions that have drawn both record attendance and critical praise, including recent exhibitions by Diane Arbus, Olafur Eliasson, Eva Hesse, Frida Kahlo, William Kentridge, Sol LeWitt, Richard Tuttle, and Jeff Wall.
Organized in conjunction with Helios: Eadweard Muybridge in a Time of Change, this installation of the SFMOMA collection and Sack Photographic Trust examines the American West through the lens of 19th-century photography. Highlights include mammoth-plate photographs of Yosemite Valley by Carleton Watkins, pictures of Yellowstone by Frank Jay Haynes, William Henry Jackson’s panoramic Pike's Peak from the Garden of the Gods, and early stereoviews of San Francisco.
ANNA PARKINA’S FIRST U.S. MUSEUM EXHIBITION
From February 25 through May 22, 2011, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will present New Work: Anna Parkina, an exhibition premiering the latest body of work by emerging Russian artist Anna Parkina.
Known for her eclectic visual language that collages media and blends genres, Parkina boldly explores the dynamics of history and perception. Her richly layered pictorial works often evoke the forms and imagery of Russian Constructivism but also draw on her own contemporary lexicon of mass-culture motifs and abstraction to reflect on changes in the artist's home city of Moscow since the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Parkina's project for SFMOMA, entitled Fallow Land—her first U.S. museum exhibition—will showcase the range of her practice with a large suite of new works on paper (including watercolors and tissue paper collages) as well as the premiere of a performance piece, all created specifically for this presentation. Organized by SFMOMA Assistant Curator of Collections, Exhibitions, and Commissions John Zarobell, the exhibition continues the museum's New Work series dedicated to featuring the most innovative expression of contemporary art.
At 31 years old, Parkina has made a name for herself in numerous international exhibitions in Europe—including the 2009 Venice Biennale—but has not shown much in the United States. Her artwork mixes photography, drawing, and text, and often incorporates bold geometric forms and color. Influences of filmic montage and industrial design recall themes and techniques of the early-20th-century Soviet avant-garde, particularly the photocollages of Aleksander Rodchenko and the abstract compositions of Liubov Popova.
But her approach to this artistic history is complex. Parkina was born and raised in the Soviet Union, but then lived abroad in Paris and California before returning to post-Soviet Russia. Parkina is particularly interested in the changes that have developed in her native city of Moscow. Rather than attempting to generate new forms that would serve to propel society forward, as did the historical Russian avant-garde, Parkina employs mass-media imagery from her surroundings—Russian cars, Soviet architecture, teapots, and birds—to investigate the cultural shifts from a more distant perspective. Teetering between figuration and abstraction, her art renders a society in flux in which careers, fortunes, and worlds are made and destroyed every day.
"What is compelling about Parkina's reuse of collage techniques is how prescient her forms of pictorial manipulation seem in our era of digital media," says Zarobell. "Her work seems to find the meaning behind the message and take it drastically out of context to produce a real world with the qualities of the surreal."
In addition to her pictorial works, Parkina has also staged performances and created videos, and has further mixed both these forms. To complement the gallery presentation of her SFMOMA project, the artist will debut a performance piece to take place on February 24, 2011, as part of the museum's Live Art series.
Parkina was born in Moscow in 1979. She studied in Paris at the Université Paris 8 and the École des Beaux-Arts and received an MFA at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. She has since returned to Moscow, where she currently lives and works. Her work was included in the 2009 Venice Biennale and 2009 Moscow Biennale and has most recently been shown at the Barbara Gladstone Gallery in New York (March 2010) and the Wilkinson Gallery in London (October 2010). Parkina has had solo exhibitions at numerous venues, including the Art Cologne Gallery in Cologne, Germany (2009); the GMG Gallery in Moscow (2009); COMA and Autocenter, both in Berlin (2008); and the Dan Hug Galerie in Los Angeles (2007). Her group exhibitions include KAI 10 raum fur Kunst, Dusseldorf, Germany (2010); Gallery Anton Litvin, Moscow (2009); Christian Nagel Gallery, Berlin (2008); CAPC, Bordeaux, France (2007); and Galerie 207, New York (2007), among many others.
A free illustrated brochure will be produced in conjunction with this exhibition, featuring images of Parkina's work and an essay by SFMOMA curator John Zarobell.
Now Playing: Anna Parkina Debuts Performance
Thursday, February 24, 6–9:45 p.m.
7 p.m. Performance by Anna Parkina
9 p.m. Performance by robbinschilds with Kinski
Parkina explores avant-garde legacies in her world-premiere performance "Fallow Land," which coincides with the opening of her New Work exhibition at SFMOMA. Then, as part of the Noise Pop Festival, dance artists robbinschilds (Layla Childs and Sonya Robbins) and Seattle noise band Kinski present C.L.U.E. (color location ultimate experience), a collaborative piece created with visual artist A.L. Steiner and set designer AJ Blandford. C.L.U.E. is a video and performance work that features a monochromatic pair moving through an array of environments, from salt flats and high deserts to redwood forests and rocky beaches, through dry river basins and vast parking lots. A work permanently in progress, the piece also shifts and adapts uniquely to each presentation site.
ABOUT THE NEW WORK SERIES
From its inception in 1987, SFMOMA's New Work series was conceived as a means to feature the most innovative expressions of contemporary art. Artists such as Matthew Barney, Marilyn Minter, and Christopher Wool were given their first solo museum exhibitions through the program, establishing the series as an important vehicle for the advancement of new art forms. Over the ensuing decade, New Work featured artists such as Glenn Ligon, Kerry James Marshall, Tatsuo Miyajima, Doris Salcedo, Luc Tuymans, Kara Walker, and Andrea Zittel, among many others. After a four-year hiatus, SFMOMA reintroduced the New Work series in 2004 and has since showcased work by Edgar Arceneaux, Phil Collins, Rachel Harrison, Wengechi Mutu, Felix Schramm, Paul Sietsema, Lucy McKenzie, Mai-Thu Perret, Ranjani Shettar, Vincent Fecteau, Mika Rottenberg, and R. H. Quaytman.
The New Work series is organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and is generously supported by Collectors Forum, the founding patron of the series. Major funding is provided by the Mimi and Peter Haas Fund and Robin Wright and Ian Reeves. Additional support is provided by Martha and Bruce Atwater and the Trust for Mutual Understanding.
20th-Century Art from the SFMOMA Collection
This installation of works from SFMOMA's painting and sculpture collection is conceived as a series of chapters that illuminate key moments and themes in the art of the 20th century. By presenting a range of conversations among varied works, the exhibition explores the many narratives the museum's collection can suggest about the history of modern art. A concentration of intimate collages and assemblage boxes by Joseph Cornell is displayed with works by Marcel Duchamp, Maria Marteus, and Alfred Stieglitz.
ParaDesign gathers objects from SFMOMA's architecture and design collection that question the norms, habits, and conventions of design. The prefix para (whose meanings include "beyond" and "abnormal") has not previously been applied to design, yet marks a central focus of the museum's architecture and design collection. Exhibition highlights include Diller + Scofidio's His/Hers, bath towels embroidered with cheeky aphorisms; and James Welling's 0469, a colorized photograph of Philip Johnson's iconic Glass House.
Arguably contemporary design's most nimble provocateur, Tobias Wong staged his debut in 2001 and continued — until his untimely death at age 35 in 2010 — to produce an extraordinary body of work he designated "paraconceptual" and "postinteresting." Drawing inspiration from various anti-art practices, Wong probed and subverted design's complicity with the culture of late capitalism, exposing its smoke and mirrors while exercising his own sleight of hand. With a unique mix of critical intelligence, courage, sincerity, and mischief, as well as a cadre of talented collaborators, Wong steadily pursued his obsession with the interplay of anxiety and consumerism in the years following 9/11. The allure of luxury goods; the cult of the celebrity designer; the stubborn failure of objects to provide the benefits demanded of them: these are among the concerns he explored across a protean body of work that encompassed objects, furniture, lighting, jewelry, installation, and performance. This is the first in-depth presentation of Wong's work in a museum and will be presented alongside an exhibition drawn from the permanent collection called ParaDesign.
Paul Klee at SFMOMA
Paul Klee (1879-1940) has long been revered as one of the most original and inventive modern artists. Born in Switzerland, Klee made his name in Germany, where he was associated with the Blaue Reiter group and became an influential instructor at the Bauhaus before being denounced as a "degenerate" artist by the Nazis. This exhibition presents a diverse array of works made between the two World Wars.
Image: Eadweard Muybridge, Boxing; open-hand. Plate 340, 1887; collotype; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
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Opening February 25 through, 2011
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
151 Third Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Museum hours: Open daily (except Wednesdays): 11 a.m. to 5:45 p.m.; open late Thursdays, until 8:45 p.m. Summer hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day): Open at 10 a.m. Closed Wednesdays and the following public holidays: New Year's Day, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas. The Museum is open the Wednesday between Christmas and New Year's Day.
Koret Visitor Education Center: Open daily (except Wednesdays): 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; open late Thursdays, until 8:30 p.m. Summer hours: Open at 10 a.m.
Admission prices: adults: $18; seniors and students: $9; SFMOMA members and children 12 and under: free. Admission is free the first Tuesday of each month and half-price on Thursdays after 6 p.m.